...on the cover of this map of Japan's former capital city.
Friday, September 4, 2009 11:55 AM
... but if you are, don't worry: Sanity Soap is provided for all your mental health needs.
(Seen in the gentlemen's facilities in a rather grotty izakaya near Shinagawa)
Parking in Tokyo is a perennial problem due to the city's notorious lack of space, which calls for all sorts of creative solutions. Not even the humble bicycle is excepted from this quandary, and many places are now adopting a clever mathematical algorithm recently developed at the renowned University of Charinko which enables easy insertion and retrieval of the maximum amount of bikes in the minimum amount of space.
You didn't think it grew naturally like that, did you?
Check out their website for more details: http://muff-web.com/hairmake/
I'm not normally a fan of random graffiti,but felt unable to resist taking a picture of this one on Yamate-Dori near Hatsudai.
"The Japan Meteorological Agency said an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.9 shook the Japanese capital of Tokyo and surrounding areas today". "No casualties were immediately reported, according to media reports". "It was felt throughout northern and central Japan, but there have been no immediate reports of damage or injuries". "In 1995, a magnitude-7.2 quake in the western port city of Kobe killed 6,400 people".
Umm, that would be the earthquake I totally failed to notice? I believe I was on an underground train at the time. Coming home to find such dramatic reports as above speckling the international media I was somewhat bemused and made a hasty check out of the window to see if I'd missed any scenes of major destruction. Tokyo, I can assure you, is still standing. This, dear drama queens of the international headline writing community, is because the dramatic-sounding magnitude 6.9 quake took place quite a way out to and under the sea, and might have caused death and mayhem in Fishopolis but only registered as a 4 on the Japanese "How strong did that feel?" scale, which translates into "strong enough to cause anyone who does feel it to say 'Oooh! Did you feel that one?' and very instable objects to possibly fall down". The only report of material casualties I have personally heard is of a toothbrush which tipped over, although it sustained no lasting damage.
As the weekend draws near, it's a certain bet you can find ThePenguin down in the mosh pit of one of Tokyo's many "live house" locations showing the locals what he's made of.
Last night it was the turn of a new location, "Fever Popo" next to Setagaya's Shin-Daita station (one stop from Shimo Kitazawa) to see ThePenguin strut his moves [*]. On the playlist were (apart from some guys I missed due to being fashionably late) were:
Tance Boy (箪笥ボーイ, actually three girls and one boy), and of course
A fine time was had by all, and though I am of course a Sunset Drive groupie, I was quite taken by Tance Boy, who successfully combine hard(ish) rock and unpretentious fun.
[*] To and from the bar for purposes of purchasing beer.
Normally Mount Fuji is not usually visible from Tokyo, mainly due to the omnipresent heat haze, but despite being a very hot day today it has been quite windy, meaning the air is very clear, and Japan's highest mountain can just about be seen poking up from behind some clouds. (Click on the image for a larger version).